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Who's Killing the BIRDs???? They're Everywhere!!!

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posted on Aug, 10 2018 @ 10:34 AM
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In just over one month a new infestation has swept across southern and coastal California and it has resulted in BIRDs being killed everywhere. People aren't just killing them, they're torturing them by burning them, smearing feces on them and crushing them. It's horrific and it's, well, weird.

Okay, now that I have your attention, we're not talking about our feathered friends here, but rather a new craze which was launched in several California cities just over a month ago. With names like BIRD, and Lime, and others, they are scooter devices which work on a pay to use principle (sort of like bicycles in some cities). It's a new business concept developed by some former executives of ride sharing services like Uber and Lyft.

It's a clever idea, with an even more clever business model (I'll give them that), but the whole concept has millions screaming foul from government officials down to citizens. They hit people, they get left in the streets to be tripped over and they're everywhere out of the blue. They're not regulated either. Now there's even a guerrilla war being waged in the streets over these scooters, thousands of which have shown up without permits, dodging regulations and just generally running amok.

Here's one article about the things...

BIRDs, BIRDs...BIRDs Everywhere

So here's how it works (basically)... You use a phone app to locate a available Bird (scooter). You find it and use your phone and a credit card to rent it. It costs a buck to unlock and about $0.15 per mile to ride. They have a range of about 10 miles, and a top speed of about 15mph. But when they run out of juice people just leave them laying all over the place (sidewalks, etc.). They don't even have to run out of juice, maybe the person just got to where they were going and left it. Now here's where the other half of the business model comes in. ...

Other people sign up to be "Bird chargers". They also use a phone app to find dead birds, round them up and charge them. Then they "release" the birds back into a "nest" (a series of central locations located around the city) where other people can pick them up and use them. A "charger" can pick them up with his/her car or whatever, then they bring them back to their own house and charge them...and later release them. For this, the "charger" receives a fee. The fee changes depending on how far and/or difficult it is to get to the dead bird, but generally ranges from around $6 to about $20 per bird. So, if you round up 6-10 birds a night you could make anywhere $36 up to $200.

Here's a short video about the stir they're causing in cities like San Francisco



It explains some of the legal issues associated with the scooters.

Here's another video about how the whole "Bird Charging" thing works. It also shows more of how it works (not a bad video either)...



The whole thing is a pretty interesting concept really. The business model is unique, but where did these people get the capital to make such a mammoth investment? And how could they not have known there would be legal issues posing a risk...or that people would be taking a dump on their scooters, or burning them, or smashing them and putting them in dumpsters...or tossing them into the ocean.

What do you think?




posted on Aug, 10 2018 @ 11:15 AM
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So about now you might be asking yourself where is the conspiracy, right?

And this is an interesting question. The conspiracy is how, and where, these services have inserted themselves into the marketplace. Consider the following:

1. On it's face it serves a "green", energy conscious role. Can't go after them on the pollution front. They also serve a transit role in a green space.

2. It would seem to have legal liability written all over it, but for whom? If you injure someone driving your car on a sidewalk you can't sue Chevy unless the vehicle malfunctioned, so the liability is on the operator.

3. It doesn't comply with helmet laws, but does it need to? Most helmet statutes don't apply here. With a top speed of only 15mph, many bicycles go faster.

4. Kick them off the sidewalks and they'll ride on the streets, pissing motorists off. Kick them off the streets and they'll ride on the sidewalks. Hazards both ways.

5. It's a "motorized" vehicle, so make them get plates and insurance. Okay, then they are legal on the streets too. No win there.

And the list goes on and on. It will be interesting to see how this plays out. They've definitely inserted themselves in a very intriguing niche. One good thing I can see coming from this is, in order to regulate these things they're (finally) going to have to regulate bicycles too. The bicycle rights thing has gone way out of control in many cities where they have more rights than motorists on the very same streets motorists are forced to pay licensing, road taxes, and insurance to use (which is wrong IMO).



posted on Aug, 10 2018 @ 11:39 AM
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My biggest question here would have to be this...


What kind of idiot approved this project in the first place? Did they honestly not see this coming? Didn't they read up on those bike sharing projects that all failed because the bikes wind up stolen, broken, etc?

The unwashed masses lock their cars when they do groceries because they don't trust each other to respect their property. Why would they respect what seems like public property?

Plebs, the lot of them.



posted on Aug, 10 2018 @ 11:54 AM
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a reply to: Flyingclaydisk
I hear this every time "they're green conscious" even electric cars. But would someone please tell me how much electricity it takes to charge these vehicle up. Oh but, the electric generators are elsewhere, someone else is getting that pollution.



posted on Aug, 10 2018 @ 12:01 PM
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originally posted by: Flyingclaydisk
Okay, now that I have your attention


Not. I have no appreciation for you tools that use a phony, deceptive headline as bait. Go back to the drawing board, if you want some people to read any further, that may consider some attention whore, suckering people, doing a bait and switch, a low life.



posted on Aug, 10 2018 @ 12:05 PM
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a reply to: an325nt

You must not have watched the first video. No one approved them. These companies just put their product out there with no permits, no nothing. They just appeared out of nowhere.

My question would be, who insured them? Surely they must have insurance somehow, minimally to deal with the theft and damage. And how does these insurance companies amortize their loses over their entire customer base? Is your insurance going up because these guys are losing money hand over fist? That's how it works you know. Are your rates going up because these guys are getting sued and fined left and right?

Just think about the first time someone gets hit by one and cracks their head on the pavement, there will be lawsuits 16 ways from Sunday, both criminal and civil. You might not be exposed so much to the civil side, but your taxes definitely pay for the criminal side. What about those costs?

And when you couple these notions with the items listed above, these could be very long and protracted procedings...which I suspect these companies know full well. They've already thought about it, and I'm sure they've already got their legal defenses built up. Listen to the two guys just completely deflect on the questions about breaking the law and damage, they've got an ace up their sleeve (there's too much money at stake not to), you just know it. And, we're going to see what that ace is real soon. They're not just going to vanish overnight, way too much of a capital investment for that. These are multi-million dollar start ups.

They're going to chart uncharted legal waters with this, mark my words!! And they know it.

It's going to be another revolution just like Uber and Lyft...and that battle is far from over.



posted on Aug, 10 2018 @ 12:06 PM
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a reply to: Scrutinizing

Bite me!

You didn't read (go figure). The product is called "BIRD" (it's right in the title), and people are destroying them.

Run along now, there's many more things here for you to hate on and whine about!


edit on 8/10/2018 by Flyingclaydisk because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 10 2018 @ 12:09 PM
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a reply to: crayzeed

I totally agree. Green is not what it seems, but the concept sells to many.



posted on Aug, 10 2018 @ 12:13 PM
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originally posted by: Flyingclaydisk

Bite me!


Sorry, I'm not a snake, and, even if so, there would be the matter of professional courtesy.



posted on Aug, 10 2018 @ 12:20 PM
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I like it. I like disruptive industries though. Remember that the car was a disruptive industry when it came out. People were outraged!

Serious question. How hard would it be to just pick up a couple of these scooters, drill through the control panel-disabling the modem, tracking capabilities and then all you would need to do is re work the controls and figure out how to charge them. Free Electric Scooter for you. Yes?



posted on Aug, 10 2018 @ 12:48 PM
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originally posted by: amazing
I like it. I like disruptive industries though. Remember that the car was a disruptive industry when it came out. People were outraged!

Serious question. How hard would it be to just pick up a couple of these scooters, drill through the control panel-disabling the modem, tracking capabilities and then all you would need to do is re work the controls and figure out how to charge them. Free Electric Scooter for you. Yes?



That sounds fun. I doubt they'll ever make it to my neck of the woods, though.

Depending on the tracking they use it shouldn't be too hard to disable it... Although I'm assuming these things don't go until you've linked them to your name. I'm guessing if the tracking indicates movement and it's not on, I wonder if they send someone out after it...? Probably not. You'd just want to disable tracking somewhere you don't plan to use it, since they'd know the last location.

Of course, that's still theft...



posted on Aug, 10 2018 @ 01:02 PM
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originally posted by: an325nt

originally posted by: amazing
I like it. I like disruptive industries though. Remember that the car was a disruptive industry when it came out. People were outraged!

Serious question. How hard would it be to just pick up a couple of these scooters, drill through the control panel-disabling the modem, tracking capabilities and then all you would need to do is re work the controls and figure out how to charge them. Free Electric Scooter for you. Yes?



That sounds fun. I doubt they'll ever make it to my neck of the woods, though.

Depending on the tracking they use it shouldn't be too hard to disable it... Although I'm assuming these things don't go until you've linked them to your name. I'm guessing if the tracking indicates movement and it's not on, I wonder if they send someone out after it...? Probably not. You'd just want to disable tracking somewhere you don't plan to use it, since they'd know the last location.

Of course, that's still theft...


Yeah, I was just wondering how big of a problem with theft they actually have. If you drill throw the control panel/mother board/modem or just break off/saw off/hammer off/cut it off, then you still have the batter, control levers and wiring, brakes, motor, the whole thing.

I'm thinking that's a $500 loss. I'm sure they can manufacture it for about that considering new electric scooters sell for that much, these would be more robust, but mass produced in india or China.
edit on 10-8-2018 by amazing because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 10 2018 @ 01:44 PM
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Green? Depends on how you see it. Externalized costs. No one sees the impact of manufacturing in China, or the production facilities for creating electricity. And where do those dead batteries go?

These scooters showed up in San Jose recently, and I've watched them violate all sorts of laws. Not only do they get driven on the sidewalks, or against traffic flow on the streets but I've seen numerous instances where they have blown through stoplights, including weaving through the traffic that has right-of-way. When one of these eventually is in an accident and someone is seriously injured or killed, who is the liable party? Can you sue the scooter company? Who can sue the scooter company? The driver? The rider? Someone run down by a scooter? Is the liability on the scooter driver? Is there a liability clause somewhere? Because you know it's going to happen.

And then there's the opportunists. There are rideshare bikes near homeless encampments that are periodically raided for seats and other parts that aren't docked. I'd think that those scooter motors might bring some cash on the black market, and then the stripped scooter could be sold, for recycling value if nothing else. So the question is how the company has deep enough pockets to eat not just hate-vandalism, but probable regular raiding of the supplies.



posted on Aug, 10 2018 @ 01:51 PM
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a reply to: Jilara

The risk(s) seem to far outweigh the benefits, dont they?

That's why I say there must be a secret here, like some kind of a trick, or loophole. These companies wouldn't do it if there wasn't some big profit angle. And with three companies all jumping in the market all at once, and just flooding them with units...something is definitely up.



posted on Aug, 10 2018 @ 02:08 PM
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a reply to: Flyingclaydisk

Yeah, funding. Because this isn't a small-scale operation. And I don't see it being funded by some idealistic eccentric billionaire any more than Uber is. The question is what the goal is?



posted on Aug, 10 2018 @ 02:14 PM
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The question is, who on earth needs scooters with motors. Or bicycles with motors.

Is mankind not fat enough because of not moving it´s fat a$$es anymore? Some countries are even known for their too fat population. Wait, isn´t the country where these scooters come from the top of these countries? What a coincidence...

When comes the "smartCouch" with an integrated toilet and wheels, so you don´t have to stand up anymore and can roll to the smartFridge?



posted on Aug, 10 2018 @ 02:19 PM
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a reply to: amazing

So let's use your $500 number (which seem realistic) for a moment and do some math.

Figure one of these companies puts 1,000 units out, that's a $500,000 capital outlay. They must figure some loss, so let's say 200 units or 20%. That leaves 800 units to pay for 1,000 units.

Okay, now let's put this into usage numbers. Each unit is capable of 10 miles, so that's 50,000 rentals. Divided by the remaining units (800), this gives us 62.5 rentals per unit just to break even. Then there's maintenece (tires, batteries, breakage, etc.). Let's figure $100 per month per unit. That's an $80,000 per month recurring cost, on top of the break even costs. Theres got to be some insurance in this somewhere. Let's say $10 per unit, so theres another $8,000 per month. And then theres debt service costs, let's say 5%. There another $2,000 per month.

This totals $90,000 per month just to stay above water. At $0.15 per mile thats what, about 600,000 miles per month, or 60,000 rentals per month!! 75 rentals per unit per month. That's mor than 2 rentals per day!!

No way!! There's something ELSE going on here!!



posted on Aug, 10 2018 @ 02:21 PM
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Oh man


Yesterday it was masturbating cyclists getting a bad rap, today it's the faeces smothered scooter stars who are being targeted. When will the madness end?

Damn you Mandela effect!



posted on Aug, 10 2018 @ 02:25 PM
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a reply to: Flyingclaydisk


Look to see who the investors are for the scooter company. Probably the same people or "relatives" who promoted this.

It will start costing tax payers more because people will trash them thus giving a justification for raising taxes.

It will end in 3 years when the investors and politicians have made their money and have created a justification for tax increase and we'll never see them again.



posted on Aug, 10 2018 @ 02:32 PM
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Of course my math assumes a useful lifespan of only 30 days, and it can't be too much more than that, but okay..let's double it to 60 days (which I'd have to see to believe). Still we're talking a rental average of one full rental per day per unit. And, that is only IF the remaining units survive that long.




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